Britons ignore smartphone ads

22 December 2011

LONDON: The vast majority of British consumers do not like smartphone ads, meaning that mobile marketers should concentrate on promotions and location-based offers instead, a new survey has indicated.

In its new Technology 2012 report, polling company YouGov found that 86% of people ignore the ads that appear on mobile web pages and apps, while 79% are actively irritated by the spots.

At the same time, the potential reach of smartphone ads is increasing rapidly. Around 40% of the Britons polled said they owned a smartphone, a figure that is likely to rise to 68% by the time respondents purchase their next handset.

In analysis accompanying the survey, YouGov suggested that mobile marketers should concentrate on location-based POS vouchers and activities based around QR codes, rather than alienating potential customers by simply adapting digital search and display ads to mobile screens.

"Smartphones' increasing ubiquity and functionality – location-based services, paying for goods, TV on demand – will result in increasing control and interaction with the 'real' world," the report added.

"For brand marketers it's clear that, when engaging with consumers through mobile, this is the type of interaction that provides the real opportunity – not advertising."

Elsewhere in the report, YouGov found that web-connected TV sets were an emerging trend in the UK, with one in 10 already owning an interactive, web-connected "Smart TV". This total is predicted to rise to 15% by the end of next year.

Tech giants including Apple and Google are also reportedly working on expanding their TV products and services.

Dan Brilot, media consulting director at YouGov, added: "Smart content producers must continue to develop their services to make it increasingly easier for people to watch what they want, when they want, wherever they want."

Meanwhile, the YouGov report also revealed that 4% of Britons now own a tablet PC such as Apple's iPad.

Data sourced from YouGov; additional content by Warc staff